This is a playlist of five pieces I wrote and recorded last year. I have posted them individually but I wanted to check back and post them as a set. 

Have a listen and do let me know what you think about the pieces either individually or as a whole.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6r_hxXU4-U&list=PLHLNSRnx4_g7CYOVuE9K-tA_aN7tUW2jK

All the best

Alex Oliver Cawley 

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Replies

  • Hi Alex,

    Is there a score you can share with us?

    Gav

  • Alex,

    I have no critique. Only an observation.

    I don't know if they sound very busy because there is an awful lot of melody in the right hand and accompaniment in the left. Or because of the hand usage, they sound very busy. It also tends to make them sound more alike. Not a bad thing, just something I noticed because I listened to them one after the other. It's OK for a piece to not have a lot of rhythmic motion, and deal more with harmonic stuff.   

  • Hi Gav

    There are bits and pieces of scores but they are only ever 80 percent complete and they aren't all that nice to look at unfortunately, I'm going to have a go at rescoring some of these in the holiday. 

    Thanks

    Gav Brown said:

    Hi Alex,

    Is there a score you can share with us?

    Gav

    Five Pieces for Solo Piano
    This is a playlist of five pieces I wrote and recorded last year. I have posted them individually but I wanted to check back and post them as a set. …
  • Hi Bob

    Thanks for your feedback, I'm not sure what you mean, I agree there is often a lot going on with both hands which is mostly intentional as I am a pianist I like to make the parts interesting to play. I hope things aren't overly busy in a bad way? Also, I feel like each of the pieces are pretty distinct so interested in your point about them sounding more alike/

    All the best

    Bob Porter said:

    Alex,

    I have no critique. Only an observation.

    I don't know if they sound very busy because there is an awful lot of melody in the right hand and accompaniment in the left. Or because of the hand usage, they sound very busy. It also tends to make them sound more alike. Not a bad thing, just something I noticed because I listened to them one after the other. It's OK for a piece to not have a lot of rhythmic motion, and deal more with harmonic stuff.   

    Five Pieces for Solo Piano
    This is a playlist of five pieces I wrote and recorded last year. I have posted them individually but I wanted to check back and post them as a set. …
  • Hi MM Coston

    Thanks for the feedback, Lady of the lake is based on a bit of music my girlfriend wrote and then I developed, I feel like it is the most straight forward so I'm glad you enjoyed it. 


    MM Coston said:

    Hi Alex,
    Of the five, I best liked "Lady of the Lake" because it sounded to my ear as most distinct from the others and there were some moments in that one that struck me as quite lovely. The others sounded to me to be overflowing with good ideas but progressed faster than I could follow on first listen.
    Five Pieces for Solo Piano
    This is a playlist of five pieces I wrote and recorded last year. I have posted them individually but I wanted to check back and post them as a set. …
  • Hi Alex,

    I hear a lot of cascading ideas and you are certainly a fine pianist. While it struck me that there were moments that seemed quite lovely in places throughout the pieces, I found it hard to grasp on to anything which coheres the pieces, individually or together. Put another way, I didn't really remember what I had heard, immediately after hearing it. I listened to everything 3 times and even after the 3rd time, could not remember any particular melody I had heard. I think a piece as full of ideas as yours are needs more space at times so that reflection is possible on what passed before so that it can be absorbed and we can mentally prepare for what comes next. Absent those spaces, the ideas tend to blend together into one seamless wall of sound which is challenging to sift through. I offer you the opinion that this is your greatest challenge as a composer: to create those spaces.

    My opinion is of course mine only, and I hope you only take it in the spirit with which I intend it, which is to assist you to be the best composer you can be -

    Gav

  • Alex,

    Presented here as a group, it is not difficult for me to think that they are more alike than they are un-alike. And they are fine pieces played by a fine pianist. 

    I am not surprised to hear you don't have complete scores. They do have a bit of an improvised feel to them. You know them inside out, and probably play them differently each time. That's OK. But remember that music is a multifaceted thing. It's not only meant to be listened to, but also played. And believe me, you've never really heard your music until you hear it played by someone else. That is a tough go for some composers here.

    It's OK to have both hands busy. But there is a difference between busy (work), and being musical. It can be a fine line.

  • Very nice work.  I especially enjoyed the Bicycle.  I am trying to think of another composer with a similar style maybe Zug der Zwerge by Grieg?  You might work in some melodic themes, but this style is not unusual in the modern repertoire.  Keep up the good work.

  • Hi Gav

    Thanks for your comments, as far as the pieces having anything connecting them all together they aren't meant to be related other than just being five pieces for the piano composed one after another. I'm obviously interested in how people enjoy it as a programme. 

    I think the melodies in each piece are there so it is a shame you couldn't remember them as strongly. In regards to space and an overabundance of ideas I mostly agree with people and I know it is something that has come up before. I really dislike repeating anything and prefer to continually move. In a lot of ways I think of my music as film music. 

    Thanks very much for listening and your feedback 

    Gav Brown said:

    Hi Alex,

    I hear a lot of cascading ideas and you are certainly a fine pianist. While it struck me that there were moments that seemed quite lovely in places throughout the pieces, I found it hard to grasp on to anything which coheres the pieces, individually or together. Put another way, I didn't really remember what I had heard, immediately after hearing it. I listened to everything 3 times and even after the 3rd time, could not remember any particular melody I had heard. I think a piece as full of ideas as yours are needs more space at times so that reflection is possible on what passed before so that it can be absorbed and we can mentally prepare for what comes next. Absent those spaces, the ideas tend to blend together into one seamless wall of sound which is challenging to sift through. I offer you the opinion that this is your greatest challenge as a composer: to create those spaces.

    My opinion is of course mine only, and I hope you only take it in the spirit with which I intend it, which is to assist you to be the best composer you can be -

    Gav

    Five Pieces for Solo Piano
    This is a playlist of five pieces I wrote and recorded last year. I have posted them individually but I wanted to check back and post them as a set. …
  • Hi Bob

    Thanks for commenting, I appreciate your comments on my playing. I agree that the interpretation of another pianist would be invaluable and I would be interested in one day hearing it but at the moment I will have to settle for my own. I personally think I do an ok job of playing them, better sometimes than others. 

    In terms of improvisation I've had that comment a lot and whilst it is true that I often write at the piano and change things a lot when it came to recording them I had finalised everything and played it all the same. 

    I'm going to try at some point to rescore things and possible rewrite and re record and I think I will reach out to some of my pianist friends and see if they want to play them through. 

    Many thanks again  

    Bob Porter said:

    Alex,

    Presented here as a group, it is not difficult for me to think that they are more alike than they are un-alike. And they are fine pieces played by a fine pianist. 

    I am not surprised to hear you don't have complete scores. They do have a bit of an improvised feel to them. You know them inside out, and probably play them differently each time. That's OK. But remember that music is a multifaceted thing. It's not only meant to be listened to, but also played. And believe me, you've never really heard your music until you hear it played by someone else. That is a tough go for some composers here.

    It's OK to have both hands busy. But there is a difference between busy (work), and being musical. It can be a fine line.

    Five Pieces for Solo Piano
    This is a playlist of five pieces I wrote and recorded last year. I have posted them individually but I wanted to check back and post them as a set. …
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